No, I personally am not going away, but my me.com (aka mobileme aka .mac aka itools) email account is. I started with the free iTools service that came out shortly before the first release of OS X. In fact, iTools was released 9 years ago tomorrow (January 5th). I stayed with it when it became the .mac paid service in 2002 because of the discounts on offer and the free software that was given to subscribers (this perk has now gone away). I had second thoughts when the fee increases were announced over the years. But when I got the most recent ‘we (Apple) will automatically update your subscription’ email, I thought to myself ‘what value am I really getting from this’?
The answer ‘is not a lot’. Syncing bookmarks was cool, but I can do that now with Opera or Evernote. As the me.com service becomes more and more iPhone-centric it becomes less attractive to me because I don’t own an iPhone nor will I own one anytime in the foreseeable future. I can sync my contacts on my Nokia N95 using Nokia Ovi online service. In fact on Ovi, I can sync my calendar, upload photos and video, store and retrieve files, enable push-mail from any POP account to my phone, access map updates and more. I have my own hosting account on dreamhost so I don’t need Apple’s crippled iWeb tied hosting.
The fact that I have stronger alternatives to Apple’s offering as well as the poor performance and outages that accompanied the mobileme ‘upgrade’, the choice was a fairly easy one. It has cost me a little effort in switching sites that were using my .mac email accounts over to another and downloading the files that I was sharing that I will need to get around to re-hosting on mobrec.com . In the end I feel better about not handing over $100+ dollars to Apple every year for what has turned out to be diminishing returns.